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6 February 2024

2023 M&A Review: Brown & Brown sets the pace as deal volumes surge 

The number of deals across UKGI rose by more than 30% last year

The UKGI M&A market picked up the pace in 2023 as deal volumes surged, with more than 130 deals completing across the course of the year. 

Brown & Brown was one of the most active firms as it completed more than 15 deals, following on from its acquisition of GRP in 2022. 

Notable deals included the acquisition of Petsmedicover, which marked the broker’s entrance into the pet insurance market, as well as London-based Kentro – an insurance group that manages more than £500m of gross written premium (GWP) and has offices in the UK, US, Europe, Asia and Dubai. 

Clear Group was another active acquirer as its deal flow hit double digits during 2023. Deals included the acquisition of Heath Crawford and Foster, which added £18m of GWP to the group. 

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2023 also marked Clear Group’s first foray into the MGA market as it took a 50% stake in Thomond Underwriting. The broker followed this up with a further two MGA deals before the end of the year as it continued to expand its underwriting footprint. 

The big news of the year, however, was the announcement of the merger of Markerstudy and Atlanta. 

The two businesses are estimated to control more than £3bn of GWP once the deal completes, although the merger is currently being investigated by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to determine whether the deal may lead to a “substantial lessening of competition within any market or markets in the UK for goods or services”. 

Despite this personal lines mega-deal, the commercial market continues to be the most active in the M&A market, with around two-thirds of deals relating to commercial lines insurance. 

Insurance DataLab can help brokers who are interested in being acquired and those who are being acquisitive by providing data and insights on the financial performance of individual broking firms and MGAs.  

We also deliver insights on the underwriting performance and solvency of insurers, and the complaints and customer experience performance of a range of insurance providers.    

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